Settled in a kink on the River Severn, Shrewsbury was the birthplace of naturalist Charles Darwin.
There are Darwin references throughout the town, which is also rich with endearing Tudor and Georgian buildings.
Like Ludlow, Shrewsbury is somewhere to get to know on foot, and has a lot of personality thanks to its independent shops on the high street and in the bustling Market Hall.
As Shrewsbury is almost totally surrounded by water, a cruise on the Severn is a treat, floating below the town’s nine bridges.
The Quarry, dating to 1719, is a heavenly park by the water with a landscaped parterre at the centre, known as the Dingle.
Get to the Shrewsbury Museum to pore over the town’s former times and go see the neoclassical Attingham Park for a cultured excursion.